In Yueyang, Hunan, Ling Lao, 89, and Zhang Lao, 91, bravely stood up, uncovered their scars, and spoke about the unfortunate experience of their young girls being abducted as comfort women by the Japanese army.
Beijing Youth Daily reporter learned from the Memorial Hall of the Japanese compatriots killed in the Nanjing Massacre that on March 2, three staff members from the museum branch, the Exhibition Hall at the old site of Nanjing Liji Lane Comfort Center, went to Yueyang, Hunan Province, to find Ling Lao (born in 1930) and Zhang Lao (born in 1928), under the leadership of local volunteer Chen Dongliang, who were newly victims of the Japanese armys comfort women system. Survivors, listen to their oral stories.
So far, there are only 15 survivors of comfort women registered in mainland China.
Father was assassinated to protect her
On March 2, the staff came to Ling Laos home in Wengjiang Town, Pingjiang County, Yueyang City. Ling Lao told the staff of the Exhibition Hall at the old site of the comfort house in Liji Lane that she was born in 1930.
In the winter of 1944, the Japanese army was led by a traitor to her village. They forced the villagers to hand over their girls. Ling Lao recalled with tears that her father had been assassinated and died on the spot in order to prevent the Japanese army from arresting her. In this way, Ling Lao, his cousin and some other local girls were arrested and detained in Pingjiang County. Ling Laos mother escaped the scourge because she was hiding in a sweet potato cellar.
Ling Lao recalls that they were detained in an old-fashioned house built of smoke and bricks, which also contained many girls captured by the Japanese army from all parts of Pingjiang. She was only 14 years old and had hardly ever been outside before, let alone with strangers. I was so frightened that I kept crying. Every time the Japanese army took the captured women from their detained rooms to another small room, they would return them after they had beenused. Ling Lao recalled that some girls rebelled because they could not bear humiliation and were finally beaten by Japanese whips. She was afraid of herself and could only be bullied by the Japanese army.
At that time, the living conditions were very poor, a hungry meal, eating leftovers, depending on the mood of the Japanese soldiers. Ling Lao recalled that once Japanese soldiers gave her a pill to eat, and she managed to throw it away.
This led a miserable life for more than a month until the Chinese army counterattacked Pingjiang and rescued them. She was reunited with her mother.
Ling Lao later made a living by farming and married a loyal local farmer. She had four sons and two daughters after marriage. Because of family difficulties, two sons were given away as soon as they were born. Because of her miserable experience, Ling Lao let her daughter marry as a woman at the age of 16. Ling Lao is currently living and cared for by a grandson who is not in good health.
Relatives died of illness when rescued
Zhang Laos home is about 10 kilometers away from Ling Laos home. Born in 1928, Zhang Lao ranked fourth in the family, with three sisters and three brothers.
Zhang Lao recalled that in the autumn and winter of 1944, Japanese soldiers led by local traitors came to the village to catch flower girls. Her parents hid in the mountains, and she herself was caught unfortunately. She was also imprisoned in an old smoky brick house in Pingjiang County. There are also dozens of girls captured by Japanese soldiers from all over Pingjiang. Im afraid, want to escape, there is no way, only keep crying, and dare not cry aloud. When recalling this past, the old man kept rubbing his hands, and his experience was the same as that of Ling Lao.
Zhang Lao said that after being rescued, the Chinese army sent her home, and her father died of illness. At the age of 24, she married an anti-Japanese soldier who later had three sons and one daughter. Zhang Lao suffers from hypertension and needs to take medicine twice a day. At present, his eldest son is taking care of his diet and living.
In the winter of 1944, he was arrested and confined in the house of Qingyan Brick in Pingjiang County Town. He was also asked to take small pills by the Japanese army. At the same time, he was rescued by the Chinese army and returned home. Their home was only 10 kilometers apart. According to the staff of the exhibition hall at the old site of the comfort house in Lijixiang, Nanjing, Ling Lao and Zhang Lao were arrested and killed in the same place at the same time. The two elderly people are the only two survivors who have been found to have suffered in the same comfort zone so far.
It has been four years since it was launched in 2016.
Both Ling Lao and Zhang Laos husbands have passed away. Before they died, they all knew about their wivesmisfortunes. Ling told the staff that she had not concealed her experience of being arrested from her husband and children. They thought it was a crime committed by Japanese soldiers. Both of them said they were old enough to tell the story of their victimization. My heart is too painful to let future generations remember this history! The old people said.
It is reported that the memorial hall and the exhibition hall of the old site of the comfort house in Liji Lane in Nanjing have carried out a visit to the registered comfort women survivors in China. This year is the fourth year since 2016. Older people, were racing against time. The staff said.
Source: Yang Yi_NBJ10647, Responsible Editor of Beijing Youth Daily